Are clear corneal incisions safe? Veteran practitioner says 'yes'

Properly constructed clear corneal incisions can ensure immediate sealing following phacoemulsification and are a key component in endophthalmitis prophylaxis, according to I. Howard Fine, MD. Dr. Fine, clinical professor of ophthalmology at Casey Eye Institute, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, spoke during the Innovator's Session.

Properly constructed clear corneal incisions can ensure immediate sealing following phacoemulsification and are a key component in endophthalmitis prophylaxis, according to I. Howard Fine, MD. Dr. Fine, clinical professor of ophthalmology at Casey Eye Institute, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, spoke during the Innovator's Session.

Since 1992, Dr. Fine, has utilized a single-plane incision technique to create 2-mm long and 2.5-mm wide incisions. Recently, Dr. Fine and his colleagues, Richard S. Hoffman, MD, and Mark Packer, MD, studied these incisions with optical coherence tomography (OCT). They found the single-plane incision to be arcuate and longer than the chord length, producing a tongue-and-groove architecture (similar to paneling). They also discovered that stromal hydration persisted for longer than 24 hours.

Side-port incisions also were analyzed with OCT. Different blades and incision sizes were studied, indicating that these tools provide good architecture if the incision is properly constructed.

With more than 10 years' experience and greater than 10,000 cases completed with no endophthalmitis, Dr. Fine said he is confident that clear corneal incisions are safe and effective for cataract surgery.